New measures to alleviate vulnerable households and farmers from energy increases announced by Costas Skrekas
New targeted measures in the first quarter of 2022 to further protect vulnerable households from high energy price increases, the Minister of Environment and Energy announced tonight in plenary, Costas Skrekas.
In his speech on the state budget for the new year, Mr. Σκρέκας stressed that in the face of large increases in energy costs, the government showed immediate reflexes and from mid-September, “very early, faster than almost all other European Member States”, set up a horizontal safety net for all households – the most vulnerable , but also the middle class – in the face of these large increases in energy costs.
He added, “We have not stopped there, but we adjust the emergency measures and aid every month, based on international developments, so as not to leave any of our fellow citizens unprotected in the face of this huge international energy crisis.” In this context, it announced new initiatives to take new measures within the first three months of 2022 that will further alleviate vulnerable households from increases in energy prices.
Mr. Σκρέκας, announced that The Ministry of Environment and Energy is planning support measures and is looking for ways to support the primary sector as well, in order not to leave farmers unprotected in the face of the global crisis that has pushed up the prices of electricity and gas.
Responding to the claims of the Opposition that Greece has the most expensive electricity in Europe, the competent minister denied it, pointing out that our country on the other hand has the cheapest price per kilowatt hour (197 euros when many European countries exceed 300 euros).
“Yesterday and today our country had the cheapest electricity of all European member states. I must say of course that even these 200 euros per megawatt hour is four times higher than at the beginning of the year. “So we understand how high the electricity prices have skyrocketed,” said Mr. Σκρέκας adding that the solution to shield our country against these threats is certainly not the one proposed by SYRIZA, which has favored the abolition of excise duty as the primary and basic weapon to address these exceptional energy prices. He explained that the excise tax on electricity does not exceed 5 euros per megawatt hour, when the interventions made by the government exceed as a subsidy 130 euros per megawatt hour, ie “the aid is 20 and 25 times higher, the support that is provided today by our government from the SYRIZA proposal “. Respectively, as the competent minister said, in natural gas the excise tax is only 1 euro per megawatt hour, when the government interventions have led to a benefit of 30 euros, ie 30 times higher benefit per megawatt hour of natural gas. “And of course new support measures are coming as they will be specialized in the near future,” he added, citing a recent statement by the prime minister, according to which “we will significantly increase in December the discount that consumers will enjoy in cooperation with DEPA Commerce with others.” private providers ”.
“Our response to the effort to create permanent bases for dealing with the variability of electricity or gas prices, fossil fuels in the future, is an ambitious coherent and modern green transition policy. A policy that includes all our fellow citizens in every stage of the transition and in its entire spectrum “, said the Minister of Environment and Energy and underlined that the government implements a multi-level and development policy every day, with a strong international dimension, with social sensitivity. but also commitment to the environment: From the ongoing simplification of the institutional framework for renewable energy sources, to the equitable adaptation of savings programs, from the green transformation of our industry and islands, to our transition to climate neutrality, which is the European vision.
“We are constantly strengthening the participation of our citizens in green energy, even of the most vulnerable, as well as the participation of businesses. Because green investments, the mobilization of over 44 billion euros by 2030 are the ones that will create over 150 thousand new jobs. Positions with high know-how and decent wages, as befits our young people, from the circular economy to hydrogen. So we are structurally changing the energy sector in all its dimensions and promoting financial tools to accelerate any transformation. And this is not a proclamation, it is a reality that the people involved in these industries feel every day. Despite the challenges of the pandemic, despite the global energy crisis, we are working methodically on 11 critical axes that are transforming our country into a hub of green energy and redefining the future of our citizens. A sustainable future, with social resilience, but also quality in our daily life “stressed Mr. Σκρέκας.
The 11 axes
In particular, the Minister of Energy stated that:
1) We are greening our energy mix faster than any other European country. The share of renewable energy sources today exceeds 32% in electricity generation, electricity demand, while in 2030 it will exceed 70%.
2) We withdraw the existing lignite plants by 2023 and proceed to a very courageous and ambitious de-lignification program, so that in 2028 we have already announced that all lignite plants should be closed, in fact for some this may happen earlier in 2025, according to PPC announcements.
3) We expand the participation of all, without exceptions and without discrimination in green energy. We have 100 million euros for the installation of photovoltaics by our Municipalities, with the aim of eliminating the energy costs for our vulnerable citizens, offsetting their clocks, their meters with these photovoltaics and providing them with almost free electricity.
4) At the same time, we are accelerating the green transformation of the industry through the support of green bilateral contracts, but also the facilitation of access to networks, dealing with saturation phenomena.
5) We specialize in targeted actions and incentives for critical sectors, such as refineries and cement industries, sectors that will in fact need to adapt much faster and much faster than they may have planned or one might have estimated in previous years. the energy transition, so that in this way we can achieve a significant reduction of the carbon footprint in these sectors.
6) We catalytically simplify even more the licensing process of RES. In the next period we will bring the second phase of simplification of the process to increase the speed of entry of RES in the electricity generation mixture while we continue cuts in later stages and define a new spatial planning for RES, so that every investor and citizens know what is allowed to be installed and where.
7) Investments in infrastructure and natural gas units will exceed 5 billion euros by 2030, while at the end of the year 600 thousand consumers will have access to natural gas with the aim of exceeding 1 million in the coming years.
8) We implement emblematic infrastructures that further upgrade energy security and the diversification of energy sources.
9) The construction of the IGB natural gas interconnector between Greece and Bulgaria is completed.
10) Also by 2023, the construction of the LNG gasification terminal in Alexandroupolis will be completed.
11) Our cooperation with Egypt is consolidated as we discuss the construction of an electricity interconnection between Egypt and Greece, but also exploring other options such as the creation of a virtual pipeline for the transportation of liquefied natural gas LNG, and other projects.